The first social networking platform,, was introduced in 1997 but unfortunately shut down in 2001. Several social media platforms similar to Six Degrees followed suit in the early 2000s and have continued to grow. With the launch of Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, the number of people actively using social media has also increased. 

Marketers are integrating new ways to promote their brand and attract the right audience. And what better way to get them than to utilize the power of social networking? For your reference, we’ve compiled the 15 most popular social networking service platforms for 2023. 

1. Facebook

Social networking platform

Facebook is undoubtedly the world’s largest social networking service. Starting and maintaining a Facebook account is easy because it caters to various content formats. Aside from connecting with your family and friends, you can also use Facebook for business. Thanks to its advertising and marketing tools, it can reach potential customers. It is a favorite of most companies, as data shows that approximately 70% of brands find new customers through Facebook. 

Monthly Active Users: 3.030 billion

2. YouTube

Social networking platform

YouTube is a popular social networking service that allows businesses to create and share video content with their audience. The platform is the second-largest search engine in the world. It is one of the most effective platforms for video marketing. Moreover, YouTube enables businesses to build and engage with a community of viewers.

YouTube offers analytics tools that provide valuable insights into video performance and audience engagement. Businesses can also use YouTube to advertise their products or services through targeted ads that appear before or during videos. Likewise, many companies post videos to address frequently asked questions (FAQs) or provide tutorials on how to use their products or services.

Monthly Active Users: 2.491 billion

3. WhatsApp

Social networking platform

WhatsApp is a popular social networking service that allows businesses to communicate with their customers and clients through a messaging platform. It enables businesses to connect with customers in real-time, share information, and provide customer support. 

Companies can also use WhatsApp as a tool for collaboration and team communication. With features like group chats, video, voice calls, and file sharing, businesses can streamline internal communication processes and improve team productivity.

Monthly Active Users: 2 billion

4. Instagram

Instagram is a popular social networking service that allows businesses to promote their products through visually appealing content. Companies can use relevant hashtags and engage with their followers to increase brand awareness and build a loyal community of customers and fans. Instagram also offers shoppable posts wherein customers can purchase products directly from the platform. Instagram ads also help businesses reach a targeted audience through sponsored content.

Monthly Active Users: 2 billion

5. WeChat (also known as Weixin in China)

Social networking platform

WeChat is a popular social networking service in China that allows businesses to connect with customers. It enables businesses to communicate with customers in real-time, share information, and provide customer support. Groups or individual chats with customers help companies send personalized messages and offer support to their audience. 

Monthly Active Users: 1.327 billion

6. TikTok

Social networking platform

TikTok (Douyin in China) is a short-form video-sharing platform. It is one of the fastest-growing apps globally, defeating Google as the most visited website. Videos are between 15 and 60 seconds long. You can find videos regarding almost all topics, from lip-syncs and dancing to challenges to DIY tricks and make-up tutorials. About 47.4% of TikTok users in the U.S. are aged 10-29. If your target demographic is young, TikTok is an excellent platform for your business.

Monthly Active Users: 1.218 billion

7. Telegram

Social networking platform

Telegram is a popular social networking service that lets businesses connect with their customers and clients through a messaging platform. Currently, Telegram has over 500 million monthly active users. Telegram is an ideal platform for businesses because of its security features, like encrypted messaging, which ensures that messages and calls are secure and private. 

Monthly Active Users: 800 million

8. Snapchat

Social networking platform

Snapchat is a social networking service that lets users share photos, videos, and messages with their followers and friends. The app is known for its unique features, such as disappearing messages and filters that add fun and creative elements to the content. Snapchat is popular among younger audiences and can help businesses to reach a highly engaged and active audience.

Monthly Active Users: 750 million

9. LinkedIn

can create a company page highlighting their brand, products, and services and use the platform to engage with customers and prospects. LinkedIn also offers advertising options to help businesses promote their brand.

Monthly Active Users: 700 million

10. Kuaishou

Social networking platform

Kuaishou is a Chinese competitor of Douyin or TikTok. Like its rivals, Kuaishou allows users to create and share short videos, photos, and live streams with their followers. Users can also follow others and interact with their content by leaving comments, likes, and shares. The app features a variety of content categories, including entertainment, travel, food, and beauty, among others. Kuaishou is also available in other countries, such as Southeast Asia and Brazil.

Monthly Active Users: 673 million

11. Qzone

Social networking platform

Qzone is a social networking service launched in 2005 by Tencent, a Chinese multinational conglomerate. It is one of China’s largest social networking platforms, with over 600 million registered users. One unique feature of Qzone is the ability for users to customize the design and layout of their profile page, making it highly personalized and visually appealing. Qzone also offers social gaming features, which have become highly popular.

Monthly Active Users: 517 million

12. Pinterest

Social networking platform

Pinterest is a one-stop site for inspiration and discovering new products and ideas. The platform is known for its highly visual and aesthetically pleasing interface, which showcases images and videos in a grid-like format. Users can browse content by searching for keywords and hashtags. They can also explore popular categories such as food, fashion, and home decor.

Monthly Active Users: 450 million

13. Twitter

Social networking platform

Twitter allows users to send and read short messages 280 characters long. Tweets can include text, images, and videos and can be publicly shared with a user’s followers. The platform is often used for breaking news and engaging in conversations on various topics. Users can search for tweets by keywords or hashtags or by following specific accounts. Tweets can be liked, retweeted, and replied to, allowing for a collaborative and interactive experience on the platform.

Twitter was rebranded to X in July 2023 following Elon Musk’s acquisition and merging of Twitter to his X Corp.

Monthly Active Users: 353 million

14. Reddit

Social networking platform

Reddit is a social networking and discussion website that allows users to post content, engage in discussions, and vote on posts and comments. The site is organized into thousands of communities- subreddits, each focused on a specific topic or interest. Users can browse these subreddits to find content and discussions related to their interests or create their own subreddit if one does not already exist.

Monthly Active Users: 430 million

15. Discord

Social networking platform

Discord is a free, voice and text-based chat app designed for gamers. But it was expanded to cater to other communities. Users can create and join servers to communicate and share real-time content.

Discord has customizable features and is compatible with various devices. It has expanded beyond gaming communities and is now used by businesses, educational institutions, and other groups.

Monthly Active Users: 140 million

Advantages and Disadvantages of Social Networking Service

While it offers unparalleled social benefits, social networks also expose individuals and businesses to the risks of misinformation, privacy breaches, and security threats.


  • Brand Awareness: Companies can leverage social networking to connect with new and existing clients, making their brands more relatable and fostering awareness.
  • Instant Reachability:  Social networking platforms enable immediate and widespread communication.
  • Building a Following: Organizations can use social networking to cultivate a global following, enhancing their reach and impact.
  • Business Success: Positive reviews and comments on social platforms can boost business sales and profitability.
  • Increased Website Traffic: Social networking profiles serve as avenues for directing inbound traffic to business websites, utilizing strategies such as compelling visuals and shareable buttons.


  • Rumors and Misinformation: Incorrect information can quickly spread on social platforms, causing confusion and uncertainty as users often accept posts without verifying sources.
  • Negative Reviews: A single negative review, particularly on a platform with a large following, can significantly damage a business’s reputation.
  • Data Security and Privacy Concerns: Users’ data may be at risk in the event of a data breach on a social networking site, as seen in the Facebook data breach in April 2021.
  • Time-Consuming Process: Promoting a business on social media demands ongoing effort and maintenance.


Choosing an exemplary social networking service for business is essential for ensuring that marketing efforts are practical. Companies should consider the target audience, brand image, content type, features, and resources. These are crucial for making an informed decision on the best platform to use for their business.

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